I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: dairy is dead. Seriously, vegan alternatives to dairy are so good these days everyone is eating them, not just vegans. In fact, the dairy industry was down over a billion dollars in sales last year while the plant-based dairy sector had record profits.
But it’s not just almond milk. Everything from ice cream to yogurt to butter is being made without dairy these days and everyone is better for it, especially the animals.
The last hold-out was cheese. I mean, how many times have you heard the excuse, “I’d be vegan but I could never give up cheese.” Well now you don’t have to. There are so many vegan cheeses on the market! We have slices, shreds, cheese wheels, spreads. And they’re truly sensational.
This weekend my husband created this gorgeous vegan cheese platter for us to enjoy before that dreadful Game of Thrones finale. It was so impressive I wanted to share it with you and explain what he did.
Great vegan cheese is getting easier and easier to find. Miyoko’s is available at Whole Foods or online and is the undeniable gold standard in vegan cheese. Here are our top five favorite Miyoko’s cheeses. Also, look for smaller, local vegan cheesemakers like this Jule’s brie we picked up from our neighborhood market, BESTIES Vegan Paradise. And don’t forget, there are also incredible vegan cheese recipes you can make at home that are simple and delicious. Check out this easy recipe for vegan muenster cheese and here is another one for vegan goat cheese.
The vegan prosciutto and carpaccio by Good & Green is brand new and super impressive, but might not be easy to find. We could’ve easily subbed this with Tofurky’s smoked ham slices or some apple sage sausage by Field Roast. Both are fabulous products with impeccable flavor.
Whenever we make a cheese plate for guests, I always make sure to include some gluten-free cracker options. For this, Mary’s Gone Crackers is my go-to. Her products are excellent! My favorite cracker for a cheese plate though is a water cracker: it’s simple and provides a neutral flavor that won’t overpower a lighter cheese like vegan brie or camembert. Also, a sliced baguette is always great on a platter like this.
Other things that make fantastic additions are nuts – try the Mesquite smoked almonds from Trader Joe’s or the flavored pistachios by the Santa Barbara Pistachio Company (Whole Foods has them). And, even though I despise them, olives. People love fancy olives and they look great on a cheese plate. I think they’re from hell though.